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Posted: 7/3/2003 10:23:42 AM EDT
My dad recenly acquired a Colt SAA Bisley in .32-20. It says .32 WCF on it but I understand it is the same thing. Is this a "1st Generation" Colt? It is patinaed with age but is tighter than a Scotsmans purse. If Colt were to re-blue it would it ruin it's collector value? I've heard that by sending to Colt to get it reblued it will not decrease it's value, but getting done by anyone else will.
We're S&W revolver people so any help would be greatly appreciated as we know bupkis about Colts.
Link Posted: 7/8/2003 4:01:46 PM EDT
Need the sn to determine age. IMHO, DON'T REFINISH IT!! Colt can't match the old finish. turnbullrestoration.com comes very close. It's yours, so do what you want. However, most collectors prefer an original gun with the honest finish it has.
Link Posted: 7/9/2003 6:59:21 AM EDT
Just coincidentally, my in laws are going through a similar deal. Meme remembered that she had her grandpa's old gun in the closet. She comes out with a hatbox with an original Colt SAA. Built in 1888 in 32-20! And yes that is the same caliber as the 32 wcf.

I have no idea when yours was built or when 32-20 was offered in the Bisley. But I do recommend that you Do NOT refinish it! In fact, do not do anything to it at all. 32-20's were fairly rare and the only way to tell it's complete history is to get a written letter from Colt's. The fee is $200-$300 depending on the details of the gun, but this greatly enhances any collector value.

Go to this site as a starting place to get some information. I 'think'... and I am certainly no expert, that a Bisley in 32-20 was fairly rare, but any value determination greatly depends on it's age, which can be determined by it's serial number. To check general info of all kinds go to:
http://www.coltsaa.com/docs/info1st.htm#sn

You can also call Colt's at 1-800-962-COLT(2658), Monday through Friday 10am -12Noon and 1pm - 5pm EST. They can tell you by the serial number what year your gun was produced and you can go from there.

Just as a frame of reference, during my recent investigation of the family's heirloom, I have seen 1st gent SAA's in 32 WCF for as little as $1750 and Bisleys as high as $10,000!

The range is extraordinary and the most important thing to collectors is origniality (no refinshing, original stocks, all numbers match) and documentation - especially if it can be linked to a person who can be researched.

Don't even think about selling this wonderful find until you have done your homework.

Link Posted: 7/10/2003 11:15:06 AM EDT
It was appraised in as is condition for $2k By Cherry's of Greensboro, NC. Woo hoo!
Link Posted: 7/20/2003 11:24:30 PM EDT
Some people. My Sheriff Bro-in-law was given a 32-20 Bisley. Not in very good shape. Trying to talk him out of it for Ma to shoot. Will need some work. Did a little studying and 32-20 was one of the favorite calibers for the Bisleys.
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